Football betting sponsorships all the rage, skiing not so much

skybet-bwin-marathonbet-footballThe Bwin half of pan-European online gambling operator digital entertainment has inked a betting partnership with French football club Olympique Marseille. The one-year deal has yet to be officially announced but the Ligue 1 squad is already promoting Bwin-related offers on the club’s official website. The Marseille side’s past betting partners have included Betclic and Intersport. Bwin recently announced the end of its long-running shirt sponsorship of Spanish team Real Madrid, opting for a less pricey tie-in with’s new social sports betting product.

Sky Betting and Gaming’s sports betting division Sky Bet has inked a betting partnership with UK Premier League side Leeds United. The one-year deal will allow Sky Bet plenty of branding opportunities via television, stadium signage and across all matchday media platforms. Sky Bet managing director Richard Flint said a sizable contingent of his company’s trading team are big Leeds supporters and will apply their encyclopedic knowledge of all things Leeds to provide quality betting content for the football club’s website as well as exclusive markets fans will be unlikely to find with any other bookie.

Alderney-licensed UK bookies Marathonbet have inked a shirt sponsorship with Premier League side Fullham FC. The two-year deal is reportedly the biggest in the club’s history and Marathonbet has an option to extend the pact by an additional year when the initial term comes to a close. Marathonbet CEO Graham Luke said Fulham, like his company, “is unique in its tradition and values,” while Fulham CEO Alastair Mackintosh log-rolled back, calling Marathonbet a “dynamic and inventive brand.”

Betting and football might be a sponsorship match made in heaven, but the same can’t be said for skiing. Last month, the International Ski Federation rewrote its sponsorship rulebook, specifically warning race organizers that “title and presenting sponsor rights will not be awarded to commercial betting companies.” Smaller scale sponsorships will be permitted, but individual athletes are also prohibited from pimping betting companies on their kit or even having them as a main sponsor. What happened to you, skiing? You used to be cool, at least, you were when Todd Brooker was attempting to combine skiing with the fledgling sport of extreme cartwheeling …